About Siddhars (from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Siddhar) (Tamil: சித்தர்): are saints in India, mostly of the Saivaite denomination in Tamil Nadu, who professed and practiced an unorthodox type of Sadhana, or spiritual practice, to attain liberation. Yogic powers called Siddhis are acquired by constant practice of certain yogic disciplines. Those who acquire these Siddhis are called Siddhas. These Siddhars can be compared to Mystics of the western civilization. Siddhars are people who are believed to control and transcend the barriers of time and space by meditation (Yoga) and herbs that transform the body to make it potentially deathless, and a particular breathing-practice, a type of Pranayama. Through their practices they are believed to have reached stages of insight which enabled them to tune into the powers hidden in various material substances and practices, useful for suffering and ignorant mankind. Typically Siddhars were saints, doctors, alchemists and mystics all at once. They wrote their findings, in the form of poems in Tamil language, on palm leaves which are collected and stored in what are known today as Palm leaf manuscript, today still owned by private families in Tamil Nadu and handed down through the generations, as well as public institutions such as Universities all over the world.
Siddhars from Nandhi’s perspective:
After years of inner journeying, meeting and absorbing the Siddhar wisdom, being consumed in the Siddhar mantras while living the life of the Siddhar, it is inspiring to write about the “Siddhars” from this experience.
The term Siddhar has always drawn intrigue, curiosity, interest and respect in India. The little known aspect about them other than from their divine poetry and literature has always created mystery while revealing the secrets of this yogic path to those who are spiritually mature seekers. In Tamilnadu and as in rest of India, it is common for an enlightened being to be called a Siddha or a Siddhar. When Gautama Buddha was born, the astrologers identified his star of birth to be powerful in all aspects, as a higher being- so he was named Siddhartha- the one who is a Siddhar. Siddhartha later left his home to seek ‘nirvana’, the attainment of liberation of the mind, to then be called Gautama Buddha.
Siddhars are Sages who journey beyond enlightenment as the ‘liberated’ yogis. In this journey within consciousness, the Siddhars abandon beliefs for experience. Connecting to the ancient lineage of Gurus who pave way for guidance, protection and grace, their’s is a process of ‘unlearning’. The inner journey of the Siddhars is based on tapas (to light the fire within of perpetual Source union). The Siddhars follow the path of oneness that embodies ahimsa (ahimsa is the life message of Mahatma Gandhi. Ahimsa means- non-violence, non-killing, tolerance and love for not only all of humanity but for all creatures as well). For the Siddhars, external knowledge especially from a book is hardly relevant as much of their knowing, practice and teachings is based on self-knowledge, the wisdom from within. With depth of silence, meditation and mantra japa (recitation of mantras) as tapas, the Siddhars examine the human realities from cosmic consciousness. Those who chose the path of the Siddhars are often not from the Brahmin caste (priests, the upper hierarchy of the Indian society) and the Brahmins who take to the path of the Siddhars often renounce their caste as a Brahmin to be able to tread this ego free wisdom. The Siddhar tradition is devoid of castes, traditions, beliefs and written teachings. Instead, the ancient wisdom was conveyed through resonance, the mantra deeksha (initiation) and the guru’s grace- with much of evolving transformation happening from one’s own effort- tapas (inner fire) and sadhana (daily discipline). For a Siddhar Sage, divinity is in form and formlessness, with the worship centered more towards a simple fire lamp as a symbolic focus of their own inner lamp. Siddhars prefer to call God, Source as to free wisdom from stagnancy of dogma. The South Indian Siddhar’s teachings of Tantiram are the roots to the term ‘tantra’, where the awakened roots of the human as in the mode of survival, sexual and primal needs unite with cosmic consciousness to transcend a normal human into an angelic yogi. Siddhars worship the Divine Feminine as the essence to wholeness.
Siddhars from the practical sense:-
In the pathway of the Siddhars, as we journey through consciousness, we realize our mind being empowered by the extra abilities such as envisioning the future, seeing the past of another person, reading the thoughts of others etc. Due to the absence of ego, the Siddhar Sages do not succumb to these extra powers of the mind and the super-normal abilities that awaken with the mind connecting with Source/God. However, the Siddhars, realizing their vastness of being Spirit/Source in their ability to transcend the mind and the limits of the mind, bring this blessing to benefit humanity. The Siddhars bless humanity by way of deepening their tapas and flowing as the guiding wisdom to all who meditate, as Guru Ayya did while he meditated in his cave for over 18 years. There are other Siddhars who are in humanity as healers, scientists, visionaries and other professions who utilize the states of higher consciousness to effect changes in real terms. Some of the notable nature of the Siddhars are- absence of ego, total love for God/Source as bhakti (devotion), lack of organization and followers around them. To a Siddhar Sage living in the midst of humanity with a life of purpose and focus, multidimensional talents as genius are brought to fore. The path of the Siddhars is attuned, aligned and suited to the current modern day society as it is a journey to seek being whole due to understanding the power of now and the colossal vastness of the human as in basic nature of goodness.
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